Intergenerational Conservation Leadership: Father's Legacy on Audubon Florida Board Fulfilled by Son

Doug Pitts Jr. Follows in Father's Footsteps

At the core of Audubon is the idea that we all walk in the footsteps of others. Audubon exists because volunteer leaders pitched in time and money to stop the plume trade in America's Everglades. More than a century later, the threats are different, but the way Audubon operates is the same: harness the work, wisdom, and wealth of a volunteer board that is as committed to conservation today as our founders were.

More than 20 years ago, we recruited Miami businessperson Doug Pitts Sr. to help build our capacity to advance Everglades restoration. Doug Sr. had a keen and declared interest in Audubon’s work because he had grown up hunting and fishing in the Everglades and over his life saw the degradation of the water conservation areas and other parts of South Florida. Firsthand knowledge of the loss of insects, frogs, and other indicators of ecosystem health is part of Doug’s drive to push conservation in America's Everglades. No Audubon meeting is complete without a version of the question, “When are you going to fix the water in the Everglades?”

Doug Sr. served on the Audubon Florida board for more than a decade and set the standard for board governance and performance– making generous donations every year, leading the rebuilding of the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey, and insisting on a business-like approach to managing the organization.

He recently retired from the Audubon Florida board and left a challenging void to fill. In addition to following his dad as a successful businessperson, Doug Jr. recently joined the Audubon Florida board. He has the same warmth, humor, and passion for natural Florida as his father. And still, no conversation is complete without him mentioning being out in America's Everglades with his dad.

From the first Audubon leaders to today’s highly engaged board, from father to son, the sense of duty and continuity moves our cause and organization forward.

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